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Sep 12th 2016, 09:16 AM   #1
 HalcyonSon's Avatar
 
  Apr 2016
  Renton

Suburban Machinery Bars Repaired

Suburban Machinery make handlebars and selected widgets for a variety of bikes including BMWs, FZs, SVs, and the Ninja 650R. I bought a handlebar and loved it, but dropped the bike on a long trip ages ago and had to ride home with the bent bar. Not horribly bent, but noticeably “off” and uncomfortable to ride. Couldn't afford to get it fixed or buy another aftermarket, so the stock went back on. Threw the SM bar in a box and forgot about it for a time.

Now, they don't even make this style anymore. The later generations of 650R require more rise in the bar to avoid contact with the fairings. They'll work on first gen, but then it's essentially the same dimensions as my stock bars. Not much point, and fairly expensive, to buy the new SM bar just for looks. SM was happy to work with me when I bought the first one, and that hasn't changed at all.

I finally contacted SM last week and they said they'd be happy to straighten the bar as long as it wasn't kinked. I'm not sure what it would take to kink these... they're something like 1/8" wall stainless. I doubt there would be a bike left to put them on. So I took some pictures and did a little tracing to verify for both of us that they were definitely bent and could be repaired. Sent them out Friday, and got a call back today confirming all my info. They should be fixed today and in the mail tonight or tomorrow.

SUBURBAN MACHINERY motorcycle accessories





Apr 12th 2017, 08:00 AM   #2
 HalcyonSon's Avatar
 
  Apr 2016
  Renton

Forgot about this post. Things have been pretty crazy for me lately, but I finally got the repaired bars on last weekend. They were a bit fussy going back on. Since they're several inches lower than the stock bars, all the cables need to be futzed around to allow the steering to move smoothly. The throttle wouldn't snap shut after I got everything adjusted, so I had to move the bars again which turns out to be an awful place for my wrists. The weird angle makes it feel like I'm riding an even smaller bike. Almost feels as small as an R3. One more small adjustment should fix everything though. I just need loosen up the clamp bolts and rotate the bars forward.

Turns out rubbing alcohol is great for removing gunk from old grip heater elements and for installing grips. I had previously used cheap hairspray to install grips. It works awesome because it dries fast and provides some adhesive afterword. Alcohol dries quick but doesn't provide any extra adhesive; just leaves the rubber grip slightly tacky which is plenty for the clutch side to stick.

One last thought. Grip heaters are amazing, but can be a nuisance when changing bars. The throttle side is stuck to the throttle tube, so it gets reused, but nobody sells replacement grip heater elements. So I now have a spare hi/low switch and resistor and one extra heating element.
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